Going into its fourth year, one of the things the Quipu team and its CEO Roger Dobaño are proud of is their low churn rate.

Quipu is an online billing software that solves your daily administrative tasks. And as with any SaaS product, churn is a number they keep close track on, says Dobaño:

I’m in touch with the churn numbers daily, but we measure it monthly, like most startups.

A low churn percentage is not only validating that they’ve built a product people like, but keeping the rate down over years has also taught them a lot about how their customers think and act, according to the CEO:

For a B2B SaaS company, it’s often quite expensive to acquire new users, so we’re very proud that we’ve been able to hold churn under one percent from the start.

Support

It’s not rocket science, with more customers come more responsibilities, and that means a higher demand for service.

As you’re scaling your customer base, one of the most important things you need to do is to make sure your customer service team scales together with your customers. The easiest way to keep churn down, is to have someone that really understands the product and cares about the customers.

He continues:

Even though many of your customers never need any help with the product, it’s part of the trust relationship you build, as the customers know that there are humans to talk to at the other end of the software.

The first 12 months Quipu didn’t hire customer care people says the CEO:

For the first year of our business, I did all the customer support myself. Not only because the team was small, but so that I always knew what our customers thought about our product.

He says he’s still in touch with the customer service team, as it’s one of the best ways to know how to develop and improve the product.

He explains that the way customer service agents should attend struggling users could be an article in itself. The baseline is to listen a lot, be understanding, patient and get to the core of what kind of problem the user is facing. There’s usually always a way to fix it.

No automated unsubscribe button

It’s not about making it hard for customers to unsubscribe, according to Roger, but it’s about understanding why they want to leave.

If you want to unsubscribe, we’ll get notified when you push the button, and we’ll get in touch. Their reason for unsubscribing is often connected to a task we can help them achieve very easily, preventing them from leaving and making them happy again.

And if the customer has decided to leave anyway, you’ll at least have the data on why, if you actually talk to them. It’s also for security reasons, as people’s financial data has to be treated carefully.

When you’ve grown a significant amount of customers or users you should also consider measuring CSAT and NPS metrics.

Apart from great service, upselling is another way to prevent customers from choosing another product. The more ways people use your product, the lesser is the chance of the person leaving you.

With a very low churn rate, you’re actually able to reach negative churn, if you’re able to upsell enough.

Quipu is counting 13 heads these days, but growing steadily every quarter.

Track patterns

When you have a payback period of one year, which is normal in SaaS companies, you need to know that people are happy especially in the beginning to keep the retention rate high.

Apart from speaking with the customers, tracking their movements and tasks inside the product is a very good way of seeing where it goes right and wrong.

For example, in Quipu one of our services is managing invoices. After looking at the user movements, we now know that the retention rate is much higher if the user creates three or more invoices. With this info we’ve been able to retain more customers over the years.

Dobaño adds that it’s also important to use movement trackers to contact users who are struggling, even before they complain or think about leaving.

Don’t go crazy with features

It’s both upsides and downsides to talking a lot with your customers (obviously more positive sides though). One of the challenges is that people have a lot of thoughts on what kind of features you should develop next.

If you’re working B2B, you’re in touch with professionals, and they’re aware of what type of features would make their day easier.

This results in new features that both keep the retention rate high and make it easier to acquire new users.

But it is easy to take water over your head and create ten good features to please everyone, instead of making 3 perfect features. It’s a difficult balance, according to Roger:

We try to focus 60 percent of our capacity on building our existing product better, and 40 percent of our time making features for acquiring new customers.

The holy two percent

When you’re working with high growth products, it’s often essential to be raising funding from investors.

A motivation in keeping your churn low is that most investors will not bet on a SaaS startup if it has a churn rate of 2 percent or more.

So even though you’re acquiring a lot of customers early on, having churn in mind from the first minute, can be more valuable than you think.

Some last tips on the list to prevent churn you should consider is:

  • Make meaningful partnerships with complimentary services.
  • Don’t let credit cards expire.
  • Let the whole team know your churn rate and be aware of changes
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S.

Startup ecosystem ranking and technology under the hood

This is the Newsletter shared on the 3rd of May. If you wish to receive newsletter faster, you can subscribe here: https://itnig.net/

 

Dear tech entrepreneur,
Ready for your quick dose of startup and tech news? Here we go!

The European startup ecosystem is fastly evolving and catching up. Don’t trust us, trust the ranking made by StartupBlink in collaboration with Crunchbase and others that lists 1,000 startup ecosystems from 100 different countries (if you are curious, Barcelona ranks 27 and Madrid 31). On top that, some people suggest Silicon Valley should look to Europe to solve its IPO problem.

On another note, something that caught our eyes was the return of Foursquare to big funding rounds. The location check-in company has raised a $150M Series G round. This is more than four times larger than its previous round showing that a business can retake traction after pivoting.

And last but not least, don’t miss the chance to attend an event organised this Wednesday at OneCoWork where Factorial’s founders Jordi Romero and Bernat Farrero will be talking about the new schedule control system.

– itnig’s team

Podcast #91: Making a very successful B2B printing company – Technology under the hood
In this week’s episode, Andrés Askenasy (Industrial Director @Camaloon), Maite Forcadell (Printing Manager @Camaloon) and Juan Rodríguez (CEO @Camaloon) chat about how Camaloon uses technology to make a very successful B2B printing company.

Andrés and Maite emphasise on what makes them different. Camaloon is run out of optimization technologies that enable them to save costs and time for their customers while remaining a successful business model.

Their next challenge? Controlling the end-to-end process including shipping. What an exciting time for them!

View on YouTube | Listen on Spotify | Listen on Apple | Listen on Google | Listen on iVoox.
And also in AnchorBreakerCastboxOvercast, and Stitcher.

New funding for startups 

Random tech news 

Product of the week 💛
Ferrari doesn’t want to get behind other players in the industry in the race (pun intended) to build greener supercars. The Cavallino Rampante has now turned hybrid with their new Ferrari SF90 Stradale getting an impressive 986HP and a top speed of 340km/h.

Work with us 

Plain Old Good DveloperSomeone who can abstract problems and find solutions across the whole stack. 

Find out about more vacancies at itnig.net/jobs.